Wednesday, August 31, 2005
Mikks (whose latest site incarnation, by the way, seems a little strange to maneuver) and Galvin, however, have never made a secret of their Godmusic, so I'm hopping onto the bandwagon, albeit with music whose quality isn't even close to theirs.
It terrifies me, putting my songs up on the Web. You might say it's like entering your kids in a beauty pageant: you hope people will like them, and that it will be a reflection of your own endearing qualities, whether these qualities be good looks or outstanding morals.
In my case, it's because I'd like people to see how superblessed I am - and giving that credit to God. Little me, praising a Great and Mighty God - the songs mayn't be the best, but the expression of gratitude that went into each song's production remains the same.
So, there. Please feel free to download the songs; they're on the right side, underneath the link to The Husband Chronicles. I hope you enjoy them, and pass them on, if you think they're worth it. God bless you, and may music pour out of your own hearts in gratitude to His goodness.
[Can't download? I can't figure it out either, but if you like it and wanna use it in church, email me.]
THREE SCREEN NAMES YOU HAVE HAD
THREE THINGS YOU LIKE ABOUT YOURSELF
I don't mind driving.
THREE THINGS YOU DON'T LIKE ABOUT YOURSELF
I can say really mean things.
I don't take criticism well.
THREE PARTS OF YOUR HERITAGE
THREE THINGS THAT SCARE YOU
GMA for Prime Minister.
THREE OF YOUR EVERYDAY ESSENTIALS
Time with Nathan and/or Cathy.
THREE THINGS YOU ARE WEARING RIGHT NOW
Orange Penshoppe "Product of the 80s" orange tee (P200).
Brown Jag corduroy jacket with rivet buttons (P700).
The love of Christ deep in my heart (priceless).
THREE OF YOUR FAVORITE MUSICAL ARTISTS
Michael W. Smith.
THREE OF YOUR FAVORITE SONGS (OF ALL TIME)
3. Walking on Broken Glass. Annie Lennox.
2. Tea and Sympathy. Jars of Clay.
1. Everything To Me. Avalon.
NEW THINGS YOU WANT TO TRY IN THE NEXT 12 MONTHS
1. Setting up a food business for my cookies. They'll kill you, I promise.
2. Get an earring. Clip-ons, of course.
3. Releasing an actual single to radio.
THREE THINGS YOU WANT IN A RELATIONSHIP
I've found everything I could ever need in Cathy.
TWO TRUTHS AND A LIE (in no particular order)
I am a certified speed reader.
I have three tattoos.
I weigh 200 lbs.
THREE THINGS ABOUT THE OPPOSITE SEX THAT APPEAL TO YOU
I'd like to introduce you to my wife.
THREE THINGS YOU JUST CAN'T DO
Stop correcting bad grammar.
Singing while driving.
Resist ice cream.
THREE OF YOUR FAVORITE HOBBIES
1. Making my weekly music charts.
THREE THINGS YOU WANT TO DO REALLY BADLY RIGHT NOW
Buy a pair of glasses.
Go home and sleep.
TWO CAREERS YOU'RE CONSIDERING
THREE PLACES YOU WANT TO GO ON VACATION TO
THREE CHILDREN'S NAMES
THREE THINGS YOU WANT TO DO BEFORE YOU DIE
Dig for dinosaur bones.
See my grandkids.
Plant a church.
THREE WAYS I AM STEREOTYPICALLY A GIRL
I cry a lot at romantic movies or sentimental commercials.
I see and believe the importance of skin care.
I can't resist window shopping.
THREE WAYS I AM STEREOTYPICALLY A BOY
I'll fight tooth and nail against using man-purses.
Porn is my greatest temptation.
I like assembling furniture.
THREE PEOPLE YOU WOULD LIKE TO TAKE THIS QUIZ
This Week. (Position Last Week). Title. Artist.
1. (2) WORDPLAY. Jason Mraz.
2. (3) NEVER UNDERESTIMATE MY JESUS. Reliant K.
3. (1) CHARIOT. Gavin DeGraw.
4. (5) FORTY KINDS OF SADNESS. Ryan Cabrera.
5. (6) YOUR HOUSE. Alanis Morissette.
6. (4) IN CHRIST ALONE. Brian Littrell.
7. (9) SHAKE IT OFF. Mariah Carey.
8. (8) HEALING RAIN. Michael W. Smith.
9. (12) WITH YOU I’M BORN AGAIN Vonzell Solomon & Billy Preston.
10. (10) DON’T’CHA. Pussycat Dolls feat. Busta Rhymes.
11. (7) KARMA (Superstition Remix). Alicia Keys.
12. (19) LETTERS FROM WAR. Mark Schultz.
13. (13) BEHIND THESE HAZEL EYES. Kelly Clarkson.
14. (16) INSIDE YOUR HEAVEN. Carrie Underwood.
15. (20) ALL THE WAY. Craig David.
16. (11) AMAZING. George Michael.
17. (14) PON DE REPLAY. Rihanna.
18. (17) TELL ME WHERE IT HURTS. M.Y.M.P.
19. (18) INSIDE YOUR HEAVEN. Bo Bice.
20. (15) EXCUSES. Jasmine Trias.
1) People were saying that Johnny Depp's Willy Wonka reminded them of Michael Jackson. Neither Cathy nor I saw that last night. I saw shades of Will Truman in his sarcastic tone, not the former King of Pop; Cathy said it was uniquely Depp's.
2) Even if the kids didn't die, the way the film handled the picking off of each kid was still pretty graphic. The Oompa Loompa dance after each "elimination" is potential nightmare material.
3) The child actors who played Veruca Salt and Violet Beauregard could've swapped roles and come out the same. I don't think the nuances between both girls was ironed out thoroughly.
4) We love Missy Pyle!
5) Freddie Sizemore has a great career ahead of him.
6) Tim Burton is a genius.
1 The earth is the LORD's, and everything in it,
the world, and all who live in it;
2 for he founded it upon the seas
and established it upon the waters.
3 Who may ascend the hill of the LORD ?
Who may stand in his holy place?
4 He who has clean hands and a pure heart,
who does not lift up his soul to an idol
or swear by what is false. [a]
5 He will receive blessing from the LORD
and vindication from God his Savior.
6 Such is the generation of those who seek him,
who seek your face, O God of Jacob. [b]
This encourages me to want to improve and make myself better for Him. This, of course, is not emphasis on good works, no. It's a direct result of the grace that saves us and renders us free from sin. When we seek God with a pure heart, our actions will naturally follow from that pure heart.
Thanks again to Henry and Tom Blackaby, and God bless your day, everyone.
Tuesday, August 30, 2005
13Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. 14As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. 15But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; 16for it is written: "Be holy, because I am holy."
1Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. 2Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, 3now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.
For me, this passage reveals two things about God's nature: 1) His desire for us to be used by Him for His purposes, and 2) His desire to bless us as we grow in Him. Fact is, we can never rid ourselves of our former selves, by ourselves. Everyday, I struggle with bad language, lustful thoughts, and indolence that'd make Old Man Winkle blush. But God's grace is sufficient for me to eventually overcome these, I know, and His forgiving heart will accept my honest repentance.
The commentary goes on to say something quite striking: "All our prayers and pleadings with God will not bring revival until we take seriously our call to holiness. If we choose to fill our minds with pornography, violence, immorality, hatred, and self-centeredness - and call it entertainment - God will not hear our prayers."
It's like the text was written for me! If you feel the same, then why not join me in a simple prayer, and let's do something about it, hm? Say a quick prayer for forgiveness, trust that He will forgive you, then move on the highway to holiness.
Thanks to Henry and Peter Blackaby. Their The Man God Uses is a powerful devotional tool.
Monday, August 29, 2005
Be that as it may, two of the three points he shared really hit home: 1) Focus of Heart and 2) Frame of Mind. In praise, we need to focus on the important - WORSHIP OF HIM! and devote our wholehearted attention to that.
Then he talked about sacrifice of praise - that in the midst of a really terrible day, that we can still find it within ourselves to praise Him. That just blew me away. It's not enough to know it - our knowledge of the Book of Job can attest to that - but it's to LIVE it.
That's what LIVINGtheLIFE is all about. It was like a ton of bricks, flat on my head. Ouchies.
Today, I promised God to try and be more grateful. It hasn't been easy. We have work today (our bosses didn't accept the national holiday), and after parking my car this morning, my pants button popped (not from tightness of waist but weakness of thread, believe me). Then, during lunch, I took my car out to save money (remember this scheme?) only to find that it's a flat rate because of the holiday, and I'm actually going to end up paying twice as much today.
Drowned my sorrows in a double cheeseburger. Not healthy, and not the right thing to do. From all accounts, this day is shot - but I will still try to praise.
Because Jesus can console better than McFries.
My Bible reading this morning (continued from 1 John 1) talked about Jesus being my bridge, and through Him, I am forgiven, so that's encouraging. Then, I read Joshua during lunch and found that he was superblessed by God just by being faithful. So I will continue to endeavor to be.
Have a good week, everyone!
Saturday, August 27, 2005
I then suggested a guaranteed way to get a scent you will like for your car. Take your favorite branded cologne or perfume and buy the imitation brand at your local thrift shop (or GreenHills, for Manila-based car owners). You'll get your favorite cologne you like at a fraction of the cost. Even if the scent fades, a quick spritz will bring it right back. The smell won't be cloying, and best of all, you know it's a scent you like!
Not into buying pirates? Head over to Market! Market! in the Fort, Makati. A store near the activity area repackages original colognes! The range is from P20 to P50 per milliliter. At that price, you can buy a small bottle of original perfume especially for your car!
Just don't leave the perfume bottle in direct sunlight. The direct heat will wreak havoc on the chemical composition of the imitation cologne, and future spritzes will begin to smell more like alcohol than your favorite brand.
Friday, August 26, 2005
The Latin abbreviation i.e., which stands for id est, means that is, that is to say, or in other words. The letters e.g. stand for the Latin phrase exempli gratia, which means for example.
Here are a few additional points to remember about these Latin abbreviations:
*The letters within them are followed by periods and have no space between them.
* Both expressions are followed by a comma when they are being used in their functionary role (i.e., not when they are being used as nouns, as phrases being spoken about, as in many places throughout this exercise).
*In professional writing contexts, they should be used only in footnotes or parenthetically within the running text of a sentence (i.e., inside parentheses).
*A few style manuals (e.g., the Texas Law Review Manual on Usage and Style) say that these abbreviations should be italicized, but most style manuals advocate setting them in roman type.
Thanks to GetItWriteOnline.
Thursday, August 25, 2005
I'm not a sports guy, but if you have love for any kind of sport (as I do for tennis), the place will stir any person's blood. Different sports show on different televisions throughout the area. The waiters are dressed in different sports outfits (baseball, I think), and the place is generally fun.
What takes the cake is the food, though. Last week, I ordered a burger, expecting a large one - but it isn't large. It's huge. Gigantic. And tasty. They have a promo where if you order a burger or sandwich that comes with barbecue fries, you get bottomless fries. That sells me! They also have a nice light pizza with a crispy crust and tart tomato sauce, and chicken sandwiches that are longer than six inches. Mmm-mm.
Wednesday, August 24, 2005
Yesterday, she gifted me with a faux leather handbag that claims to be from Pierre Cardin. With its triangular shape and leather strap in the middle, it looks like a cross between a laptop case and the latest release from Gucci. I reacted with indignant masculine fervor.
"I will not use a handbag!"
"It's not a handbag," she said, "it's a handy bag. You can put all your CDs, your USB drive, umbrella, and sunglasses in it."
"Perhaps your cologne, and the car keys, so it's all in one place..."
Then, I misplaced my USB drive this morning and drove Cathy crazy as I looked for it.
"If you used the
My man purse is currently beside me as I blog. Pesteng buhay naman, oo. Maybe later, I can pick up some blush, fishnet stockings, and clear heels as I roam the streets.
Monday, August 22, 2005
This is so amateur. :)
Song Title (Position Last Week). Artist.
1.CHARIOT (1) Gavin DeGraw.
2. WORDPLAY (2) Jason Mraz.
3. NEVER UNDERESTIMATE MY JESUS (4) Reliant K.
4. IN CHRIST ALONE (5) Brian Littrell.
5. FORTY KINDS OF SADNESS (6) Ryan Cabrera.
6. YOUR HOUSE (7) Alanis Morissette.
7. KARMA (Karmastition Remix) (3) Alicia Keys.
8. HEALING RAIN (9) Michael W. Smith.
9. SHAKE IT OFF (11) Mariah Carey.
10. DON'T CHA (10) Pussycat Dolls feat. Busta Rhymes.
11. AMAZING (8) George Michael.
12. WITH YOU, I'M BORN AGAIN (15) Vonzell Solomon and Billy Preston.
13. BEHIND THESE HAZEL EYES (12) Kelly Clarkson.
14. PON DE REPLAY (13) Rihanna.
15. EXCUSES (16) Jasmine Trias.
16. INSIDE YOUR HEAVEN (19) Carrie Underwood.
17. TELL ME WHERE IT HURTS (14) M.Y.M.P.
18. INSIDE YOUR HEAVEN (17) Bo Bice.
19. LETTERS FROM WAR (18) Mark Schultz.
20. JUST A SMILE (new) Barbie Almabis.
It was full - some party, apparently. So we decided to eat at Penang Hill.
The restaurant is Malaysian-Singaporean fusion. It's a really good place - neat, well-appointed tables with fortune plants as table decor. Paintings on the walls, and very efficient staff. As for the food, well...!
Cathy loves tom yum goong, a hot and sour Thai soup with prawns, mushrooms, and lemongrass, among other exotic ingredients, and prior to Penang Hill, her favorite was at Oody's. However, this particular one was more flavorful, and had more meat (and mushrooms). It was less spicy, though, which is a catch for some who like their tom yum spicy, but I loved it, and Cathy proclaimed it the best tom yum she's had locally.
Other great dishes we had were kangkong with garlic (which they topped with tiny danggit fish), moist and exploding with flavor. I don't normally like samosas, the Indian empanada, but their version was delightful, with the right mix of meat and vegetables, and was especially delicious with the peanut sauce that came with it (it was so good, we ordered another after the first one disappeared in a matter of minutes). The beef rendang was okay, but I wasn't too much of a fan because I picked tendon from the batch and it was terribly tough. We also had an amazing pork barbecue that was truly delightful, with the right mix of fat and meat that just melts in the mouth.
The meal itself wasn't cheap: we spent more than P1,600 for all that food, but we left satisfied and carried through until the next morning (yes, that's right, we didn't eat dinner because the meal was that filling). Give it a shot - I think you'll find it quite the experience.
Sunday, August 21, 2005
Meanwhile, Cathy and I have made a firm conviction not to buy from the Banawe street hawkers. Doing this only encourages their filthy ways, and I can't stomach the possibility of spending P1500 to buy back my own mirrors! So even if it causes us three times more, we're buying from the legitimate folks. May this example spread.
I just have to say that in times of famine and in times of plenty, God's will must remain sovereign.
The past few months have found us in prayer, asking God for direction, and, after eventually having received it, confirmation of that direction. Eventually, we received confirmation, and acted on it.
I obviously can't say too much about what's happening in this part of my life, but suffice it to say that struggling in times of famine must never be a struggle by oneself. That is when the body of Christ surrounds you and comforts you. When there is no comfort in one particular area during times of famine, the rational thing to do is to search for refreshing and healing elsewhere.
Of course, it's never easy, and when the unity, direction, goals, and vision are either threatened or have changed, for the sake of all, sacrifices must be made. If this is a test, there is no pass-fail right now, just items being answered ont he way to finishing the test, and hoping you've made it, pleasing the Test Giver.
I hate being cryptic, but I do seek prayer from Superblessed visitors in this time of confusion and need: please keep us in your prayer - again, that in all things, God's name may be glorified.
Saturday, August 20, 2005
Thursday, August 18, 2005
Branding myself as an efficient, good-quality-in-short-amount-of-time professional is true, albeit not quite fair given the fast work turnover here.
I need a better branding strategy. ;)
Wednesday, August 17, 2005
- Romans 12:1-2, The Message
Let this speak to all of us, in times of crisis and in times of wellness, that in all things, God's will may prevail and His name be glorified.
Tuesday, August 16, 2005
"About the only actor who leaves an impression here is Cesar Montano, playing the head of a band of Filipino guerrillas. With his slouch hat and swagger, he displays a cocksure, easy arrogance that gives the film some sorely needed star power."
- Chris Barsanti, FilmCritic.com
"The Filipinos are led by Capt. Juan Pajota (Cesar Montano), a forcible local actor who steps into the Hollywood cast and adds to its authenticity and sense of mission."
- Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
Congrats, Mr Sunshine Cruz!
After the longest time, Cathy and I finally finished our bottle of Body Shop Vanilla lotion. It was everything you could ask for in a lotion: nongreasy feel, excellent absorption, good scent (although I wasn't too much of a fan - I'm not necessarily inclined to smell like a cookie).
With prices on body maintenance products skyrocketing, it doesn't make any sense to purchase another P500 bottle of lotion, so I headed over to Zen Zest. I regularly buy antibacterial hand sanitizer from there (melon is my favorite, followed closely by apple), so I was sure of their quality. This time around, I looked for body lotion, and the particular branch I went to had five scents: talc, ocean, melon, raspberry, and apple.
Eventually, I decided to go with the Melon variety because it smelled like delicious melon milk! Cathy put some on last night and I this morning, and it appears to be all good naman, considering it's only P120 for a bottle that's even larger than the Body Shop bottle I bought. There wasn't a greasy afterfeel, which was a plus, nor was it disgustingly sticky (which is what Cathy and I got with this other P500 product called Skin Milk, don't get it, it's horribly sticky).
I'm such a fag right now. Well, knock it off. When we're 60, I'll look great and your sun-damaged, unmoisturized hides will wish you took time to take care of 'em. LOL
Monday, August 15, 2005
With at least two locations I know of - De La Salle Manila and Ateneo de Manila, hm, I wonder why? - selling these incredible sweet treats, I can be anywhere in Manila and not be too far from a Cello's. The best one off the selection is, believe it or not, cheese; I never thought I would ever enjoy a cheese donut, but then again, Cello's uses a different kind of powdery cheese that pulls the trick off delightfully. Among their other truly yummy offerings: chocnut (ooh!), M&Ms (ooh ooh!), and dark chocolate (OOH!) with a Toblerone dip! God, there goes my diet!
Cherry Hill Chicken Pie. I didn't like empanadas. I used to think they were mealy, horrifyingly dry little pastries that were thought up by people who didn't know what else to do with leftover beef and chicken. That was until I got hold of chicken pie from Cherry Hill, which is readily available at most 7-11's, I think, and at a quaint corner store in Quiapo, where I happened to be late today on the way home from church.
This chicken pie will change your life. Remember the dry, crusty empanada? This is a rich, buttery, flaky piece of heaven. Remember the icky flavor of beef or chicken with all them potato and raisin extenders? This chicken pie is nothing but butter and chicken, garnished with finely chopped potatoes and nary a raisin (I hate raisins in empanada). If you don't have access, text me because I will go there. I will. And I'll buy them for you. It's P20 each, but I'll make patong P3 per piece because of all the trouble to get there because it is worth it. Take it from an overweight guy who loves food. This is great chicken pie.
While I'm at it, I also want to recommend their Asado Siopao. The siopao dough is light and soft, and from the three pieces we ordered, each siopao appears to be 60%-70% asado meat. That is good value because most siopao you buy skimps on the meat. at P20, I'm thrilled senseless.
Finally, if you're in the Banawe area, you have GOT to go to Tazza. It's this cafe beside a car wash along the street of Jollibee Banawe. Bounce and I were there last Saturday, and he treated me to their Kahluea Walnut Cake. This cake will flip you around and take you all the way to Thursday! I've eaten in a lot of places, and this is the best cake I've ever had. Better than Sugarhouse. Better than any hotel I've gone to. One layer of pure chocolate ganache. One layer of caramel. Roasted walnuts. Moist chocolate cake. And chocolate all over it. It was a rush. It was pure. It was heaven. I took Cathy there, and she tried the Baba Cake. It was also incredible. Melt in your mouth goodness. God bless 'em.
Friday, August 12, 2005
I'm a little concerned for my eyes, though. Nathan (or one of the other two kids in the house) broke my glasses, and I've been working for two weeks without them. The end result: things are looking really blurry. It doesn't help that my computer monitor's really close to me, so I can't adjust the levels.
I gotta rest my eyes, that's the bottom line.
Wednesday, August 10, 2005
Here are some theories about what went on during their "brain"storming session:
1. People need to park, it's a necessity since they work there, so let's make as much money off 'em as we can.
2. They get a cut from the trains, buses, jeeps, and taxis that ply the area; with parking prices so exorbitant, people will be forced to take public transportation.
3. It's funny watching young professionals make a dash for their offices after getting caught in sudden downpours from their far-away parking at the Ayala mall.
The way it works out, Ayala mall parking from 7AM to 7PM (if you're forced to park because you're coded, and Makati doesn't accept the 10AM to 3PM window), at a P40 starting rate (for four hours), with P15 additional hourly rate, will cost you P160. You may spend as much as P210 if you decide to linger past 7PM for dinner and a movie. Assuming you don't, and do the regular 8AM to 5PM shift, you will spend P115 (because it's impossible for you to work eight hours including parking and walking time), and you will therefore work in at least one additional hour to travel to and from your place of parking.
At P115 a day, you will spend P2300 on parking alone.
Commuting a better option? Really? Have you waited 30 minutes in crushing human traffic to get a ride from the train, then battled rush hour to get a jeep or taxi to take you to work? Terrible. If there's an FX that takes you straight to Landmark, good for you, but how much is that? P50, one-way? Two-way, you've spent P100 to and from work, and still gotten in line.
There's no convenience like having a car, despite the gas and parking fees. You're blessed to have a car. Your time and health are just as valuable as your money.
So if you park in a mall or parking lot with a starting fee, here's a tip to help you maneuver around the sneaky Makati traffic, worst case scenario: park for four hours, go to work. Come back before your four hours are up. Take your car out, pay the P40, come back in again. You'll pay only an additional P75 for the new four hours (plus one hour walking time) instead of the P75 you would otherwise pay if you stayed the entire eight hours in the parking area. Certain places in Makati charge less starting rate (P40 is for Greenbelt 4. It's P35 at Greenbelt 1, and P30 at the open parking area facing McDonald's).
There are other parking lots that charge less, but those are usually full by the time you come into work. You can work out your own parking scheme based on where in Makati you are.
Saturday, August 06, 2005
Fuzion's Greenbelt home is designed so deliciously! Bright oranges and yellows make this particular branch a wonderful place to be in, because it just lifts your spirits up. There's a section (Claire calls it the Japanese sofa, hwek hwek) with red and orange pillows; you can sit yourself down beside translucent orange tables.
They raised their prices, but it's still better than Big Chill, which is ridiculously sweet, and Fruit Magic, which tends to taste terrible when the smoothie's no longer cold. The Fuzion folks got rid of the Peachy Lychee, my favorite drink of choice, and replaced it with South Peach, which is peach, lychee, and mango. Mmmm.
I love it, love it, love it.
Me enjoying my South Peach.
The facade of Fuzion Greenbelt.
The outer inner.
More outer inner.
The Japanese sofa.
Claire didn't wanna model, but anyway...
...and a bonus for the regulars, one of Nathan's latest pics, taken at his lolo's birthday party.
Tuesday, August 02, 2005
The people are warm and enthusiastic, the job description is challenging and fulfilling, and I learn so much from my bosses.
/sings I think I'm gonna like it here...
Check out The Husband Chronicles, my new home improvement blog for men!